About PHL DSA

Who We Are

We fight for a society without class exploitation and oppression. Where decisions about what to produce, and how to produce and distribute it, are made democratically. We want to build a world where everyone has a right to food, healthcare, a good home, an enriching education, and a union job that pays well. We think this kind of world is necessary for people to live rich and creative lives — and to be truly free.

The world we live in violates any reasonable standard of justice and decency. A tiny number of rich and powerful families lives off of the profits they make from trashing the environment and underpaying, overworking, and cheating the vast majority of society — the working class. They get richer precisely because the rest of us get poorer.

For decades, we've been told what we can't have: A decent living, a home of your own, a comfy retirement -- in short, a meager share in our society's immense collective wealth. We believe it is time to take back up these promises.

But moral outrage is not enough to change the world. Democratic socialists also have a strategy to break the power of capitalists and the bosses who do their bidding: we see a united, militant working class as the leading force for radical social change.


How We Work

Philadelphia DSA is volunteer-run and member-funded. Our organization relies on the commitment and consistent work of our members. And with several ongoing campaigns and initiatives, nearly a thousand local members and regular weekly activity there is plenty of work that goes into our day-to-day operations.


Campaigns & Initiatives

The best way for members to get involved is to participate in our Local's campaigns. Our campaigns are the cornerstone of our work. They advance our political program and demands. The Sanders campaign taught us the importance of knocking every door, and getting our political message out to as broad an audience as possible.

Campaigns and ongoing initiatives are typically voted on by the general membership and carried out through their respective committees, commissions and groups. To find out how to get involved in any of our campaigns reach out to phillydsa@gmail.com or check out our upcoming events!

Democratic Socialists for Medicare for All

Bernie 2020

Fair Work Week Pennsylvania

Our City, Our Schools

Socialist Night School


General Meetings

At General Meetings, the Local assembles to hear reports from projects and committees, set policy and work priorities, and to debate and vote on resolutions. General Meetings also feature short political education sessions from socialist intellectuals and organizers from across the country.

These meetings are the center for democratic deliberation and decisions. The assembled membership is the ultimate decision-making body of the Local, so participation of all members is crucial. General Meetings are open to all, but you must be a member in good standing (have paid national dues) in order to vote.


Leadership & Structure

Steering Committee

The Steering Committee serves as Philly DSA's highest elected body. Between local conventions, the committee implements the decisions of the general membership, coordinates between the various working committees, acts as a representative of the organization, coordinates work with coalition partners, facilitates strategic discussion in the local and decides on matters that require immediate action. The Steering Committee is elected every two years at our Local Convention.

The 2017-2019 Steering Committee is made up of:

  • Melissa Naschek (Co-chair)
  • Scott Jenkins (Co-chair)
  • Adam Goldman (Treasurer)
  • Paul Prescod (Secretary)
  • Alex Nagle
  • Jed Slaboda
  • Jarek Ervin
  • Dustin Guastella
  • Marilyn Arwood

Philly DSA Steering Committee Communications Policy

  • Members who contact individual Steering Committee members with formal or important communication for the Committee will be directed to re-submit their request to phillydsa@gmail.com. This will help make sure that communications to the Committee are better coordinated and help Committee members avoid any ambiguity about personal vs. Committee communications.
  • Senders will receive a receipt acknowledgement from co-chairs or secretary within 3 business days.
  • A timeline for response will be outlined in the receipt acknowledgement.
  • The Steering Committee will not respond to anonymous communications.

Committees & Commissions

Our Local also consists of several project based and task based committees and commissions that help with ongoing work. A committee is simply a body of members appointed or elected by our membership tasked with considering, investigating, or taking action on behalf of the membership. Some of our committees are tasked based and ad hoc, meaning they exist for a short period of time. Others are standing bodies that take up regular business. If you'd like to be put in touch with any of our committees or have any questions about how to get involved please send a message to phillydsa@gmail.com

For more on our structure and organization we encourage all members to read and become familiar with the DSA Constitution and Philly DSA's Local Bylaws.


Outreach Committee

Chair: Rhianna Dean

The Philly DSA Outreach Committee creates all internal and external communications and digital content for the local chapter. This includes all of our web development and technology efforts, emails, phone-banking, events calendars, social media, and of course, excellent memes.

Political Education Committee

Chair: Briana Last

The political education committee organizes discussions, reading groups, and public events that explore the strategy, history and theory of socialism and support the political initiatives of the local. 

Social Committee

Chair: Jonah Gardner

The Social Committee exists to enrich social ties, welcome new and potential members and foster camaraderie in our local chapter. We are responsible for planning social events and activities both independently and in concert with our chapter’s existing committees. 

Electoral Evaluation Committee

Chair: Alex Nagle

The Electoral Evaluation Committee (EEC) develops recommendations for the local on issues related to electoral politics.

Canvassing Committee

Chair: Victoria Fleck

The Canvassing Committee plans and executes canvassing projects and manages data connected to the Local's political campaigns like Medicare For All and electoral work.  

Bucks & Montgomery County Branch (BuxMont DSA)

Chair: Hamer Rodriguez, Daniel Kauder

The BuxMont branch of Philly DSA creates campaigns and events in the Montgomery and Bucks county suburbs of Philadelphia. The branch meets monthly to discuss various socialist campaigns and actions, in a suburban context.

Delaware County Branch (DelCo DSA)

The DelCo branch of Philly DSA creates campaigns and events in the Delaware county suburb of Philadelphia. The branch meets monthly to discuss various socialist campaigns and actions, in a suburban context.

Philly DSA Grievance Commission

The purpose of the Philly DSA Grievance Commission is to receive and review all filed grievance claims in order to determine if they are credible, not credible, or not substantiated. To read more about the process or to file a grievance you can do so here.

 

 

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